St Eugene’s Cathedral
Francis Street, Derry
BT48 9AP | Tel: 028 7126 2302
The Season of Creation has a special significance for the Catholic Church, particularly since Pope Francis established 1 September as an annual World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation.
The Season of Creation or Creation Time, is marked throughout the Christian world from 1 September to 4 October (Feast of Saint Francis of Assisi) and celebrates the joy of creation as well as encouraging awareness-raising initiatives to protect the natural environment.
A message of hope from Bishop Donal in the Season of Creation last year.
This year, as in previous years, the Season of Creation will be celebrated from 1 September - 4 October. It is an opportunity to give thanks to God for the gift of creation, to explore with parishioners the rich content of Laudato Si' and decide on what actions should be taken locally to care for our common home.
The theme for the Season of Creation this year is "A Home for All?: Restoring Our Common Home".
Liturgical Resources for use during the Season of Creation are now available for downloading on the website of the Irish Episcopal Conference, www.catholicbishops.ie. They are made up as follows:
In addition to the Resources, you will also find, later in August, Podcasts on the website of the Irish Episcopal Conference relating to the Season of Creation.
After the Season of Creation there will be a meeting in October of world leaders in China for a UN Biodiversity Conference (known as COP 15) and another UN meeting on Climate Change in November of world leaders in Scotland on (known as COP 26). In preparation for these UN meetings there will be a petition known as the Healthy Planet, Healthy People Petition available at http://healthyplanetandpeople.org/ for dioceses, parishes, and individuals to sign. It is envisaged that this petition with signatures will be presented by Pope Francis to the Presidents of these upcoming UN conferences.
The Season of Creation, of course, should be celebrated in a way that adheres to the Government Guidelines concerning the Covid-19 crisis during 1 September - 4 October 2021.
Finally, you may wish to know that these Resources have been prepared by the Laudato Si' Working Group of the Council for Catechetics.I hope you will find them helpful and, of course, you should feel free to adapt them to suit the local circumstances of your parish(es) and school(s).
The following resources are offered for use in dioceses, parishes and in the home, during the Season of Creation 2021:
The Diocese of Derry has launched a consultative plan about climate change and the environment and is inviting everyone within the Diocese to read, engage and respond to it. The plan identifies actions and behaviours that support rather than destroy the environment. The suggestions cover such areas as land, buildings, energy, food, travel and waste.
With this strategy the Diocese acknowledges its responsibility to participate in the global challenge to mitigate against environmental degradation and climate change. Pope Francis issued a ground- breaking Encyclical called Laudato Si which lays out the importance of creation, the degradation and depletion happening in the world and the role everyone must play in caring for 'OUR COMMON HOME'. The Pope highlighted the need for an 'ecological conversion' – he said 'Living our vocation to be protectors of God's handiwork is essential to a life of virtue; it is not an optional or secondary aspect of our Christian experience. Human life is grounded in three fundamental and closely entwined relationships: with God, with our neighbour and with the earth itself'.
Pope Francis' encyclical letter 'Laudato Si' - Care of our common home' is addressed to "every person living on this planet". Laudato Si' was published on 18 June 2015, in eight languages. At the time, many held great hopes that it would be a powerful voice of influence in three major UN moments, one of which was the UNFCCC Paris Agreement on climate change and greenhouse gas emissions.
What is an encyclical?
An encyclical is a letter circulated by the Pope to Catholic churches worldwide. It is sent directly from our Holy Father in Rome to Catholics all over the world and is often addressed to all people of good will, namely non-Catholics who may also want to read the document. Pope Francis' encyclical 'Laudato Si' - Care of our common home' is addressed to "every person living on this planet".